Iraq Civilian Deaths Hit 1.2M
New poll is highest-ever estimate of non-military casualties
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 14, 2007 5:24 PM CDT
Family members pray around coffins in Imman Ali shrine in the Shiite holy city of Najaf, 160 kilometers (100 miles) south of Baghdad, Iraq, Thursday, Aug. 23, 2007. Family members gathered in the shrine...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – A UK polling firm has put the Iraqi civilian death toll at an alarming 1.2 million. Though the US claims sectarian violence casualties have halved since June, neither they nor the Iraqi government maintains a tally of civilian losses, the Los Angeles Times reports. But both call the study’s number exaggerated.

Roughly half of Baghdad’s households—and 22% nationally—have suffered a loss in the war. Every other victim was shot to death, and 20% died in car bombs. The previous highest estimate of civilian casualties was 654,965, which the Iraqi government called “ridiculous” when it was released last year.